2019 Forum Consecration to Jesus Through Mary

Discussion in 'Consecration to Mary' started by Sam, Feb 20, 2019.

  1. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 17: The Visions of 1947

    Several months after Mother Teresa first felt her "call within a call," she experienced three visions that further expressed her calling. In the first vision, she saw a huge crowd of all kinds of people that included the very poor and children. The people in the crowd had their hands raised toward her and were calling out, "Come, come, save us — bring us to Jesus."

    In the second vision, the same great crowd was there, and this time Mother Teresa could see the immense sorrow and suffering in their faces. She was kneeling near Our Lady, who was facing the crowd. Although she couldn't see Mary's face, she could hear what she said: "Take care of them — they are mine. — Bring them to Jesus — carry Jesus to them. — Fear not."

    In the third vision, the same great crowd was there again, but they were covered in darkness. Despite this, Teresa could see them. Within this scene, Jesus hung on the Cross, and Our Lady was a little distance away. Teresa, as a little child, was just in front of Mary. Mary's left hand rested on Teresa's left shoulder and her right hand held Teresa's right arm. Both of them were facing the Cross, and Jesus spoke to Teresa:

    I have asked you. They have asked you, and she, My Mother, has asked you. Will you refuse to do this for Me — to take care of them, to bring them to Me?

    Notice the role of Our Lady in these visions. She is there, helping Teresa to hear the desire of the Lord's Heart and to see the suffering of the crowd. She is there as a Mother with her "little child," facing Jesus and the crowd together. She gives comfort and support to Teresa, just as she did to St. John at the foot of the Cross. Father Joseph Langford, MC, co-founder of the Missionaries of Charity Fathers, reflects on the meaning of these visions:

    Without Our Lady, we would be ... alone before the crosses of life, oblivious to Jesus in our midst. In times of trial, we are often like the poor in Mother Teresa's vision, covered in darkness, unaware that Jesus is there in the midst of us. [W]ithout the fidelity [Our Lady] gave to Mother Teresa, the world would not have heard those words [I thirst], or seen them lived out, today.

    It turns out that Our Lady was specially present to Mother Teresa not only in these visions but also during the original, September 10th grace. On the 50th anniversary of that blessed day, Mother shared something new: "If Our Lady had not been with me that day, I never would have known what Jesus meant when he said, 'I thirst.'" What was Teresa getting at? What she meant comes to light when we reflect again on the Marian dimension of the March 25th letter on "I Thirst":

    ... [Our Lady] was the first person to hear Jesus' cry "I Thirst" with St. John, and I am sure Mary Magdalen. Because Our Lady was there on Calvary, she knows how real, how deep is His longing for you and for the poor. Do we know? Do we feel as she? Ask her to teach ... . Her role is to bring you face to face, as John and Magdalen, with the love in the Heart of Jesus crucified. Before it was Our Lady pleading with Mother, now it is Mother in her name pleading with you —"listen to Jesus' thirst."

    This passage gets to the heart of Mother Teresa's relationship with Mary, and nothing summarizes it better than this golden line: [Our Lady's] role is to bring you face to face ... with the love in the Heart of Jesus crucified.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Bring me face to face with the love in the Heart of Jesus crucified.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  2. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary- Day 18

    Sixth day Week 1

    St. Luke: Chapter 17:1-10

    On Leading Others Astray
    1 And he said to his disciples, "Temptations to sin are sure to come; but woe to him by whom they come! 2 It would be better for him if a millstone were hung round his neck and he were cast into the sea, than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin.

    Brotherly Correction
    3 Take heed to yourselves; if your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him; 4 and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, and says, 'I repent,' you must forgive him."

    The Power of Faith
    5 The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!" 6 And the Lord said, "If you had faith as a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this sycamine tree, 'Be rooted up, and be planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.

    Humble Service
    7 "Will any one of you, who has a servant plowing or keeping sheep, say to him when he has come in from the field, 'Come at once and sit down at table? 8 Will he not rather say to him, 'Prepare supper for me, and gird yourself and serve me, till I eat and drink; and afterward you shall eat and drink? 9 Does he thank the servant because he did what was commanded? 10 So you also, when you have done all that is commanded you, say, 'We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.'"

    Imitation: Book 3, Chapter 47
    That All Grievous Things Are to Be Endured For the Sake of Eternal Life
    My son, be not wearied out by the labors which thou hast undertaken for My sake, nor let tribulation cast thee down ever at all; but let My promise strengthen and comfort thee under every circumstance. I am well able to reward thee, above all measure and degree. Thou shalt not long toil here, nor always be oppressed with griefs. Wait a little while, and thou shalt see a speedy end of thine evils.

    Litany of the Holy Spirit; Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary; Ave Maris Stella

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  3. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 18: The Immaculate Heart of Mary

    Mary's role is to bring us face to face with the love in the Heart of Jesus crucified. But what if when we're there with Him, "face to face," we don't feel moved? What if we stand before a crucifix, ponder the Lord's Passion, and feel little or nothing? What if our hearts are hard and insensitive because of our sins? This happens. We all sin, and sin hardens hearts. Aridity and desolation also happen, regardless of our sins. Whatever the reason, our hearts can be cold and unfeeling, and this can be a problem. Thankfully, the one who has a sinless, perfect, immaculate heart will help us. She'll give us her compassionate heart. She'll even let us live in her heart! If only we'll give her ours.

    During our week with St. Louis de Montfort, we learned that when we consecrate ourselves to Mary, we give our whole selves to her, and Mary then gives her whole self to us. The emphasis that week was on merits: If we give our merits to Mary, she gives her merits to us. This is a marvelous thing. Yet Mother Teresa gives a bit of a different emphasis to all this. Her concern is with the heart. In other words, her version of a total consecration to Mary focuses on a kind of exchange of hearts: We give Mary our hearts, and she gives us her Immaculate Heart. For Mother Teresa, this gift of Mary's heart through consecration essentially means two things that are expressed by two simple prayers: "Lend me your heart" and "Keep me in your most pure heart."

    First, "Lend me your heart." By this prayer, Mother Teresa asked Our Lady to give her the love of her heart. In other words, she says, "Mary, help me to love with the perfect love of your Immaculate Heart." Remember, Mother Teresa's passionate desire was to satiate the thirst of Jesus for love, and she wanted to do this in the best way possible. What better way to love Jesus than with the perfect, humble, immaculate Heart of his mother? Here, Mother Teresa found the secret to living out her vocation to the full: "Mary, lend me your Immaculate Heart."

    But can Mary really give us her heart? Of course, there's something piously poetic in this idea. Yet there's truth in it. When Mother Teresa often said to Mary, "Lend me your heart," she meant it. Did she suppose that the physical organ of her heart would be removed from her body and that Mary would come down from heaven and give her hers? Of course not. The physical organ of the heart is itself but a symbol of a deeper, spiritual reality. "The heart" refers to one's inner life and the seat of the indwelling Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit. Now we come to the heart of the heart of the matter.

    Recall our week with St. Maximilian Kolbe and how he emphasized the bond between the Holy Spirit and Mary. He said that Mary is the spouse of the Holy Spirit and that their union goes even deeper than a spousal union. He went on to say things like this: "The Holy Spirit does not act except through the Immaculata, His spouse. Hence, she is the Mediatrix of all the graces of the Holy Spirit." So, if we want to love Jesus completely, ardently, and perfectly — as did Mother Teresa — then we need His Spirit of Love, and Mary Immaculate brings Him to us. Let us pray, "Mary, lend us your Heart. Bring us the Spirit. Pray that our hardened hearts would burn with love for Jesus. Help set our hearts on fire with love for Him."

    The second prayer is "Keep me in your most pure heart." Or, stated more fully, one prays, "Immaculate Heart of Mary, keep me in your most pure heart, so that I may please Jesus through you, in you, and with you." This part of Mother Teresa's consecration to Mary is the most profound. She's not just asking for Mary's heart to be in her but for her to be in Mary's heart! So, this is a prayer to love Jesus through Mary, in Mary, and with Mary. This is something more than simply having Mary lend us her heart. To understand and live it requires a loving dependence and profound union with Mary. The day after tomorrow, we'll cover what this means and how we get there. Tomorrow, we'll learn more about Mary's attitude of heart.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, Living in Mary.
    Keep me in her most pure and Immaculate Heart.
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
  4. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 19

    Seventh day Week 1

    St. Luke: Chapter 18:15-30

    Jesus and the Children
    15 Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them; and when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. 16 But Jesus called them to him, saying, "Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 17. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it."

    The Rich Aristocrat
    18 And a ruler asked him, "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" 19 And Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. 20 You know the commandments: 'Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother.'" 21 And he said, "All these I have observed from my youth." 22 And when Jesus heard it, he said to him, "One thing you still lack. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me." 23 But when he heard this he became sad, for he was very rich.

    The Danger of Riches
    24 Jesus looking at him said, "How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God! 25 For it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." 26 Those who heard it said, "Then who can be saved?" 27 But he said, "What is impossible with men is possible with God."

    The Reward of Renunciation
    28 And Peter said, "Lo, we have left our homes and followed you." 29 And he said to them, "Truly, I say to you, there is no man who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, 30 who will not receive manifold more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life."

    Litany of the Holy Spirit; Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary; Ave Maris Stella

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  5. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 19: Heart-Pondering Prayer

    Are you ready for your consecration to Mary? If not, then get ready! As I said in the beginning, after Consecration Day, everything changes. A gloriously new day dawns in our spiritual lives. Indeed, when we give Mary our "yes," she begins to arrange all the events and details of our lives in such beautiful, tender, and loving ways. So, we need to get ready. Specifically, we need to get ready to recognize the multitude of mercies that will come to us through her Spouse, the Holy Spirit.

    Oftentimes, we don't recognize the many gifts that God pours out to us in our daily lives. What we do recognize are daily annoyances, burdens, difficulties, and inconveniences. These win our attention. These get us complaining. These get us in a bad mood and sap our energy. Wouldn't it be a tragedy if, after we started receiving even more gifts and graces through our consecration, we didn't change this negative attitude? Yes, it would be. So, we need to get ready, and Mother Teresa will help us.

    Mother Teresa lived in some of the poorest environments on earth. She had to put up with burning heat, bad breath, stuffy rooms, nagging fatigue, endless responsibilities, bland food, hard beds, body odor, cold water bathing, and an agonizingly deep spiritual aridity. Yet, despite all this, she radiated joy. She smiled. She marveled at the good things God did in her life and in the lives of others, and she pondered the countless loving details arranged by Our Lady. Seeing and recognizing all this, she didn't complain.

    How did Mother Teresa develop such a spiritual sensitivity and attitude of gratitude? What was her secret? Two things.

    First, she followed the example of Mary who was always "pondering in her heart" the "good things" that God was doing in her life (see Luke 2:19, 51). Of course, like Mother Teresa, Mary also lived in poverty and surely bore her share of darkness in prayer. Yet she also found God in the details, pondered his goodness in her heart, and responded with praise: "Magnificat!' Indeed, she praised and thanked God in all things, because she found God in all things and pondered deeply in her heart his many signs of love.

    Second, Mother Teresa followed the example of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the soldier saint and master of practical prayer. Specifically, she lived his method of making a daily examination of conscience ("examen"), whereby one reviews the day, at the end of the day, in the presence of the Lord. Contrary to what people often think about the examen, it's not simply a laundry list of sins. In fact, Ignatius directs people to spend most of their time reflecting not on sins but on the blessings of the day. It's really an exercise in recognizing the good things God is doing in our lives and how we are or are not responding to his love. It's an imitation of Mary's attitude of heart-pondering prayer. (To learn a method of making the examen, see [endnote 73 in the print edition of 33 Days to Morning Glory].)

    God is always showering his love and mercy down on us in so many ways. It's important that we begin to recognize these blessings and thank him for them, especially because this shower of blessings is going to turn into a torrent of grace once we consecrate ourselves to Mary. So, let's get ready. Let's remember that, according to Mother Teresa, one important way that we live out our consecration is by recognizing God's blessings and pondering them, with Mary, deeply in our hearts. Such heart-pondering prayer leads to praise and thanks, and praise and thanks sets us on fire with divine love.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Help me to recognize and ponder in my heart all the good you do for me.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  6. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary

    St. Louis de Montfort Consecration - Week 2

    Theme for the Week: Knowledge Of The Blessed Virgin

    Acts of love, pious affection for the Blessed Virgin, imitation of her virtues, especially her profound humility, her lively faith, her blind obedience, her continual mental prayer, her mortification in all things, her surpassing purity, her ardent charity, her heroic patience, her angelic sweetness, and her divine wisdom: "there being," as St. Louis De Montfort says, "the ten principal virtues of the Blessed Virgin."

    We must unite ourselves to Jesus through Mary - this is the characteristic of our devotion; therefore, Saint Louis De Montfort asks that we employ ourselves in acquiring a knowledge of the Blessed Virgin.

    Mary is our sovereign and our mediatrix, our Mother and our Mistress. Let us then endeavor to know the effects of this royalty, of this mediation, and of this maternity, as well as the grandeurs and prerogatives which are the foundation or consequences thereof. Our Mother is also a perfect mold wherein we are to be molded in order to make her intentions and dispositions ours. This we cannot achieve without studying the interior life of Mary; namely, her virtues, her sentiments, her actions, her participation in the mysteries of Christ and her union with Him.
  7. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 20

    First day Week 2

    St. Luke: Chapter 2:16-21, 42-52

    16 And they went with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. 17 And when they saw it they made known the saying which had been told them concerning this child; 18 and all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. 19 But Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them. 21 And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

    41 Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the Passover. 42 And when he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom; 43 and when the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, 44 but supposing him to be in the company they went a day's journey, and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintances; 45 and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, seeking him. 46 After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions; 47 and all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. 48 And when they saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, "Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been looking for you anxiously." 49 And he said to them, "How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?" 50 And they did not understand the saying which he spoke to them. 51 And he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Apr 28, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  8. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 20: A Consecration Covenant

    Yesterday, I said we need to get ready for our consecration to Mary by learning to recognize all the blessings that will start pouring in. Today, we'll be shifting gears a bit. We'll be preparing for Consecration Day by reflecting on how serious a commitment Marian consecration really is. This is an important part of our preparation because the more seriously we take it, the more seriously the Mother of God will take it. Mother Teresa will be particularly helpful to us today; for she took her consecration to Mary very seriously.

    Part of the reason Mother Teresa took her consecration so seriously has to do with her roots in Albanian culture. A key word in this culture is "besa." Literally translated, this means "faith," but its more complete meaning is "word of honor" and "to keep one's promise." Mother Teresa explains:

    [Besa] means even if you have killed my father and the police are after you, if I have given you my word, then even if the police kill me, still I will not disclose your name.

    In other words, to the mind of Mother Teresa, if you give your word to someone, you give yourself. Indeed, besa has a sacred character like a vow, oath, or covenant. Let's reflect on that last word, "covenant." This is how Mother Teresa described her consecration to Mary. It's a word that has rich, biblical meaning: It describes the bond of relationship between God and his people throughout salvation history. Such a bond is more than a contract, as scripture scholar, Scott Hahn, explains:

    [A] major difference between contracts and covenants may be discovered in their very distinctive forms of exchange. A contract is an exchange of property in the form of goods and services ("That is mine and this is yours"); whereas a covenant calls for the exchange of persons ("I am yours and you are mine"), creating a shared bond of interpersonal communion.

    Another feature of a covenant is that it usually entails certain rights and obligations. For example, in the marital covenant, a husband and wife have the right to enjoy one another in the spousal embrace of self-giving love, but they also have the obligation to care for and support one another "in good times and bad." Mother Teresa also understood her "Covenant of Consecration" with Mary as having certain rights and obligations, and she communicated this Marian spirituality to her religious family, the Missionaries of Charity.

    Fr. Joseph Langford, MC, inspired by Mother Teresa's teaching on the Covenant of Consecration, spells out the details of a Missionary of Charity's rights and duties in her relationship with Mary, listing 12 corresponding rights and duties. The list begins, significantly, with Mary having the duty to give "her spirit and heart" and ends with each Missionary of Charity having the "right" to enter into Mary's heart and share her interior life. So, the two bookends of this covenant with Mary are Mother Teresa's two prayers that we learned about earlier: "Lend me your heart" and "keep me in your most pure heart." Everything in between is simply the terms of the relationship.

    Let's conclude, then, by pondering the Missionaries of Charity's Consecration Covenant with Mary, beginning with its introductory paragraph:

    Moved by an ardent desire to live in the closest union with you possible in this life, so as to more surely and fully arrive at union with your Son; I hereby pledge to live the spirit and terms of the following Covenant of Consecration as faithfully and generously as I am able.

    1. To give of her spirit and heart.
    2. To possess, protect, and transform me
    3. To inspire, guide, and enlighten me.
    4. To share her experience of prayer and praise.
    5. Responsibility for my sanctification.
    6. Responsibility for all that befalls me.
    7. To share with me her virtues.
    8. To provide for my spiritual and material needs.
    9. Union with her heart.
    10. To purify me and my actions.
    11. Right to dispose of me, of my prayers and intercessions and graces.
    12. Total freedom in and around me, as she pleases in all things.

    1. Total gift of all I have and am.
    2. Total dependence on her.
    3. Responsiveness to her spirit.
    4. Faithfulness to prayer.
    5. Trust in her intercession.
    6. Accept all as coming from her.
    7. Imitate her spirit.
    8. Constant recourse to her.
    9. Remembrance of her presence.
    10. Purity of intention; self-denial.
    11. Right to avail myself of her and her energies for the sake of the kingdom.
    12. Right to enter into her heart, to share her interior life.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Help me to ardently make a Covenant of Consecration with Mary.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  9. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 21

    Second day Week 2

    Secret of Mary: Nos. 23-24

    True Devotion to Our Blessed Lady

    If we would go up to God, and be united with Him, we must use the same means He used to come down to us to be made Man and to impart His graces to us. This means is a true devotion to our Blessed Lady. There are several true devotions to our Lady: here I do not speak of those which are false. The first consists in fulfilling our Christian duties, avoiding mortal sin, acting more out of love than with fear, praying to our Lady now and then, honoring her as the Mother of God, yet without having any special devotion to her. The second consists in entertaining for our Lady more perfect feelings of esteem and love, of confidence and veneration. It leads us to join the Confraternities of the Holy Rosary and of the Scapular, to recite the five or the fifteen decades of the Holy Rosary, to honor Mary's images and altars, to publish her praises and to enroll ourselves in her modalities. This devotion is good, holy and praiseworthy if we keep ourselves free from sin. But it is not so perfect as the next, nor so efficient in severing our soul from creatures, in detaching ourselves in order to be united with Jesus Christ. The third devotion to our Lady, known and practiced by very few persons, is this I am about to disclose to you, predestinate soul. It consists in giving one's self entirely and as a slave to Mary, and to Jesus through Mary, and after that, to do all that we do, through Mary, with Mary in Mary and for Mary We should choose a special feast day on which we give, consecrate and sacrifice to Mary voluntarily lovingly and without constraint, entirely and without reserve: our body and soul, our exterior property such as house, family and income, and also our interior and spiritual possessions: namely, our merits, graces, virtues, and satisfactions.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  10. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 21: 'Be the One' (with Mary)

    In case the list of 12 duties that we covered yesterday has got some of us feeling overwhelmed, today we'll focus on a simpler way of remembering the essence of Mother Teresa's consecration to Mary: "Be the one." Or, more specifically, "Be the one, with Mary." What does this mean? The main clue comes from the Offertory verse (Ps 68:21) for the Mass of the Feast of the Sacred Heart:

    My heart had expected reproach and misery. And I looked for one that would grieve together with me, and there was none: and I sought one that would console me, and I found none.

    Mother Teresa responds, "Be the one." Be the one to console Jesus by satiating his burning thirst for love. She writes:

    Tell Jesus, "I will be the one." I will comfort, encourage and love Him. ... Be with Jesus. He prayed and prayed, and then He went to look for consolation, but there was none. ... I always write that sentence, "I looked for one to comfort Me, but I found no one." Then I write, "Be the one." So now you be that one. Try to be the one to share with Him, to comfort Him, to console Him. So let us ask Our Lady to help us understand.

    That last sentence is key. We need Our Lady to help us understand the thirst of Jesus. She's the one who consoles him best. She's the spouse of the Consoler, the Holy Spirit. Through Mary, the Holy Spirit can help us understand what it means to be a consoler of the Heart of Jesus:

    [Let] us try in a special way to come as close as the human heart can come to the Heart of Jesus and try to understand as much as possible Jesus' terrible pain caused to him by our sins and His Thirst for our love. ... Thank God our Lady was there to understand fully the thirst of Jesus for love. She must have straight away said, "I satiate Your thirst with my love and the suffering of my heart."

    Yes, we can thank God for Our Lady. She teaches us to "be the one" with her, consoling Jesus on Calvary. She helps us to "straight away" say, "Jesus, I satiate Your thirst." But what exactly does this mean? What does it mean to satiate the thirst of Jesus? Two things: to console Jesus the Head of his Mystical Body and to console him in the members of his Body.

    How do we console Jesus, the Head of the Body? By being apostles of joy, which means "to console the Sacred Heart of Jesus through joy," and we do this especially with Mary's joy. For Mother Teresa continues, "Please ask our Lady to give me her heart." Mary is the one who, despite her own trial of darkness, praises and thanks God in all things, smiles at him, and consoles him with her love. It's simple and beautiful. Mother summarizes it by her trademark three virtues: total surrender to God, loving trust, and perfect cheerfulness. Basically, it's to be as a child, with Mary, smiling at Jesus and loving him from the foot of the Cross.

    Now, how do we console Jesus in the members of his Body? By recognizing their thirst. Everyone thirsts: rich and poor, young and old, believer and unbeliever. Everyone has a restless heart for God, for man is a restless thirst. To console Jesus in others is to respond to their suffering, especially to that deepest, most universal suffering: the thirst for love. We should respond to this thirst in others not with indifference but with a gentle smile that says, "I delight that you exist, and I, too, understand the pain of the thirst." Mother explains:

    The greatest evil is the lack of love and charity, the terrible indifference towards one's neighbor... .People today are hungry for love, for understanding love which is much greater and which is the only answer to loneliness and great poverty."

    By accepting her own thirst (with Mary's help) and not running away from it, Mother Teresa could understand the thirst of others — both Jesus on the Cross and Jesus in her neighbor — and she became a true apostle of mercy and joy: a true missionary of charity.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Help me to "be the one" to console Jesus with Mary.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  11. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 22

    Third day week 2

    From True Devotion to Mary: Nos. 106-110

    2. Marks of authentic devotion to our Lady.

    106. First, true devotion to our Lady is interior, that is, it comes from within the mind and the heart and follows from the esteem in which we hold her, the high regard we have for her greatness, and the love we bear her.

    107. Second, it is trustful, that is to say, it fills us with confidence in the Blessed Virgin, the confidence that a child has for its loving Mother. It prompts us to go to her in every need of body and soul with great simplicity, trust and affection.

    108. Third, true devotion to our Lady is holy, that is, it leads us to avoid sin and to imitate the virtues of Mary. Her ten principal virtues are: deep humility, lively faith, blind obedience, unceasing prayer, constant self-denial, surpassing purity, ardent love, heroic patience, angelic kindness, and heavenly wisdom.

    109. Fourth, true devotion to our Lady is constant. It strengthens us in our desire to do good and prevents us from giving up our devotional practices too easily. It gives us the courage to oppose the fashions and maxims of the world, the vexations and unruly inclinations of the flesh and the temptations of the devil. Thus a person truly devoted to our Blessed Lady is not changeable, fretful, scrupulous or timid.

    110. Fifth, true devotion to Mary is disinterested. It inspires us to seek God alone in his Blessed Mother and not ourselves. The true subject of Mary does not serve his illustrious Queen for selfish gain. He does not serve her for temporal or eternal well-being but simply and solely because she has the right to be served and God alone in her.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  12. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 22: Mary's Gift of Mercy

    During this fourth and final full week, we'll be focusing on the example and words of another great teacher of Marian consecration: St. Pope John Paul II. "The most Marian Pope," as he's been called, profoundly deepened the Church's understanding of Marian consecration. Building on the work of the Second Vatican Council, he provides us with a thoroughly biblical treatment of Marian consecration — which he also calls "entrustment" — and homes in on the idea that it's Mary's role to lead us into the mystery of Christ's redeeming love and self-consecration to the Father.

    In 1917, while World War I raged, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal. She told them that the war would end but if people didn't convert, a worse war would follow and Russia would spread its errors throughout the world, causing more wars, martyrs, and persecutions of the Church. To prevent this, Mary asked that the Holy Father consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart and for people to make five consecutive "First Saturday" communions of reparation. In the end, she said, her Immaculate Heart would triumph.

    It's interesting that Mary mentioned Russia. At the time, this was cause for confusion: Russia? Holy Russia? What errors would this devoutly Christian country spread throughout the world? And how could such a poor Russia exercise so much influence? (At this point in history, the Soviet revolution was in its infancy; the communist, atheist, totalitarian regime had not yet been established.)

    After Mary gave her prophesy about Russia, the children saw a vision involving a "bishop dressed in white," who they understood to be the Pope. With great distress, they saw that he would suffer much and then be shot and killed. The children described what they saw only to Church authorities, who decided not to disclose it to the public. This became known as the last "secret" of Fatima.

    Now, the very first apparition of Our Lady of Fatima happened on May 13, 1917, at 5 p.m. Exactly 64 years later, May 13, 1981, at 5 p.m., a small, open-air jeep rode out into St. Peter's Square, carrying Pope John Paul II, who warmly greeted pilgrims gathered in the square. At one point, the jeep stopped so the Pope could take a little girl into his arms. After he gave her back to her jubilant parents, the jeep continued on its way through the sea of waving, cheering pilgrims. Suddenly, a gunman fired two shots at the Pope from close range. The first bullet grazed his elbow. The second struck him in the abdomen and ricocheted inside him, shredding intestines and piercing his colon. Miraculously, the bullet missed the main abdominal artery by one tenth of an inch. Had it been struck or even grazed, John Paul would have bled to death on the way to the hospital. Realizing this blessing, the Pope stated that "One hand fired, and another guided the bullet."

    What hand guided the bullet? John Paul believes it was the hand of Our Lady of Fatima (the May 13th anniversary was not lost on him). In fact, after the shooting, he asked for the envelope containing the last secret of Fatima, the one about the "bishop dressed in white." Then, with Fatima much on his mind, he thought to consecrate the world to Mary's Immaculate Heart as soon as possible, and he began composing an act of entrustment, which he solemnly prayed less than a month later. Even before this, within a week of the shooting, he repeated his own personal consecration to Mary in a recorded address to the pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square: "To you, Mary, I repeat: Totus tuus ego sum."

    On March 25, 1984, in St. Peter's Square, before the official statue of Our Lady of Fatima that had been flown in for the occasion, John Paul made a more solemn entrustment of the world to Mary's Immaculate Heart. He concluded the prayer with the following words:

    Let there be revealed, once more, in the history of the world the infinite saving power of the redemption: the power of merciful Love! May it put a stop to evil! May it transform consciences! May your Immaculate Heart reveal for all the light of Hope!

    After learning of the Pope's solemn entrustment, Sr. Lucia, the lone survivor of the three Fatima seers, declared that it fully satisfied Our Lady's original request. Five years later, the horrific, Soviet, totalitarian regime that had terrorized millions of people suddenly came to an end.

    That victory won, the Pope didn't rest. What he once called the "century of tears" was far from over. To confront the ongoing evil and injustice in the world, he forcefully proclaimed, with growing frequency, the saving power of God's "merciful Love." His efforts to promote this message culminated in the establishment of the universal Feast of Divine Mercy Sunday in 2000 and a solemn Act of Entrustment of the world to Divine Mercy in 2002. Three years after this entrustment, the great Marian Pope, the great Mercy Pope, died on a first Saturday and the vigil of Divine Mercy Sunday. Mary had saved his life at the dawn of his pontificate so that, through him, her divine Son could lead the Church to the victory of Mercy and the triumph of her Immaculate Heart.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Have mercy on us and on the whole world!
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  13. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 23

    Fourth day Week 2

    True Devotion: Nos. 120-121

    Nature of perfect devotion to the Blessed Virgin or perfect consecration to Jesus Christ.

    120. As all perfection consists in our being conformed, united and consecrated to Jesus it naturally follows that the most perfect of all devotions is that which conforms, unites, and consecrates us most completely to Jesus. Now of all God's creatures Mary is the most conformed to Jesus. It therefore follows that, of all devotions, devotion to her makes for the most effective consecration and conformity to him. The more one is consecrated to Mary, the more one is consecrated to Jesus. That is why perfect consecration to Jesus is but a perfect and complete consecration of oneself to the Blessed Virgin, which is the devotion I teach; or in other words, it is the perfect renewal of the vows and promises of holy baptism.

    121. This devotion consists in giving oneself entirely to Mary in order to belong entirely to Jesus through her. It requires us to give: (1) Our body with its senses and members; (2) Our soul with its faculties; (3) Our present material possessions and all we shall acquire in the future; (4) Our interior and spiritual possessions, that is, our merits, virtues and good actions of the past, the present and the future. In other words, we give her all that we possess both in our natural life and in our spiritual life as well as everything we shall acquire in the future in the order of nature, of grace, and of glory in heaven. This we do without any reservation, not even of a penny, a hair, or the smallest good deed. And we give for all eternity without claiming or expecting, in return for our offering and our service, any other reward than the honour of belonging to our Lord through Mary and in Mary, even though our Mother were not - as in fact she always is - the most generous and appreciative of all God's creatures.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  14. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 23: Maternal Mediation

    As one of our guides to Consecration Day, St. John Paul II is a triple gift. Not only is he a Marian saint, like our other three guides; not only is he brilliant and thoroughly trained in theology, like de Montfort and Kolbe; but he is also a Pope. Therefore, his words carry the teaching authority of the successor of St. Peter ... and the authoritative weight of an Ecumenical Council! Well, this is true in the sense that his teachings on the Mother of God are deeply rooted in the authoritative Mariology of the Second Vatican Council. Because of this dependence on the Council, before we look to John Paul's teaching on Marian consecration, let's see what the Council has to say about Mary. (Tomorrow, we'll begin to ponder how John Paul builds on Vatican II's teaching.)

    One can find the main Marian teachings of Vatican II in the last chapter of the Dogmatic Constitution of the Church, known by its Latin title, Lumen Gentium. The heart of these teachings has to do with what's usually called Mary's "maternal mediation." Maternal mediation basically means that Mary is our spiritual mother (hence "maternal") who assists us from heaven with her prayers and motherly care to help bring us to God (hence "mediation"). While the term "maternal" should be familiar, "mediation" may need some explaining.

    A mediator is someone who stands between two people for the sake of bringing them into unity. Thus, Jesus Christ is a mediator. He is the one who, after the Fall, stands between God and fallen humanity to bring us back into communion with God. And there's only one, as St. Paul makes clear, "[T]here is one mediator between God and men, the man Jesus Christ" (1 Tim 2:5).

    If there's only one mediator between God and man, and if that one mediator is Jesus Christ, then why does the Second Vatican Council describe Mary as a mediator? Because God is generous. In other words, Jesus doesn't keep his role as mediator to himself. He wants Mary — and not just Mary, but all Christians — to share in his one mediation, though in subordinate ways. For instance, each of us shares in Christ's one mediation when we pray for one another "in Christ." I mentioned a similar point in the introduction when I wrote that God wants all of us to participate in his work of salvation. I also mentioned there that Mary has a uniquely important role in this work. Again, according to Vatican II, this special role is captured by the phrase "maternal mediation."

    Among creatures, Mary's role in the ongoing work of salvation is by far the most important. She was given such an important role "not from some inner necessity" on God's part but "from the divine pleasure." Again, we see God's generosity in including us in the work of redemption, we the very same creatures he came to redeem. The following passage from Lumen Gentium summarizes Mary's cooperation in this work both when she was on earth and now as she is in heaven:

    [T]he Blessed Virgin was on this earth the virgin Mother of the Redeemer, and above all others and in a singular way the generous associate and humble handmaid of the Lord. She conceived, brought forth, and nourished Christ. She presented him to the Father in the temple, and was united with him by compassion as he died on the cross. In this singular way she cooperated by her obedience, faith, hope, and burning charity in the work of our Savior in giving back supernatural life to souls. Wherefore she is our mother in the order of grace.

    This maternity of Mary in the order of grace began with the consent which she gave in faith at the annunciation and which she sustained without wavering beneath the cross, and lasts until the eternal fulfillment of all the elect. Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this salvific duty, but by her constant intercession continued to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation. By her maternal charity, she cares for the brethren of her Son, who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties, until they are led to the happiness of their true home. Therefore the Blessed Virgin is invoked by the Church under the titles of Advocate, Auxiliatrix, Adjutrix, and Mediatrix. This, however, is to be so understood that it neither takes away from nor adds anything to the dignity and efficaciousness of Christ the one Mediator.

    So, while on earth, Mary cooperated with God's plan of salvation "above all others," particularly by giving birth to and caring for Jesus. Now in heaven, Mary still cooperates in a special way in God's plan of salvation. Through her "constant intercession" and "maternal charity," she brings us grace, mercy, and the "gifts of eternal salvation." Tomorrow, we'll begin to see how John Paul develops this teaching on Mary's motherhood in the order of grace. For now, we can reflect on this great gift of God: Mary is our spiritual mother whose Godgiven task is to nurture us with tender care and the gifts and graces that come to us through her loving prayers.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Fill my heart with praise to God for giving me Mary as my spiritual mother.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  15. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 24

    Fifth day Week 2

    True Devotion: Nos. 152-164

    This devotion is a smooth, short, perfect and sure way of attaining union with our Lord,n which Christian perfection consists. (a) This devotion is a smooth way. It is the path which Jesus Christ opened up in coming to us and in which there is no obstruction to prevent us reaching him. It is quite true that we can attain to divine union by other roads, but these involve many more crosses and exceptional setbacks and many difficulties that we cannot easily overcome. (b) This devotion is a short way to discover Jesus, either because it is a road we do not wander from, or because, as we have just said, we walk along this road with greater ease and joy, and consequently with greater speed. We advance more in a brief period of submission to Mary and dependence on her than in whole years of self-will and self-reliance. (c) This devotion is a perfect way to reach our Lord and be united to him, for Mary is the most perfect and the most holy of all creatures, and Jesus, who came to us in a perfect manner, chose no other road for his great and wonderful journey. The Most High, the Incomprehensible One, the Inaccessible One, He who is, deigned to come down to us poor earthly creatures who are nothing at all. How was this done? The Most High God came down to us in a perfect way through the humble Virgin Mary, without losing anything of his divinity or holiness. It is likewise through Mary that we poor creatures must ascend to almighty God in a perfect manner without having anything to fear.(d) This devotion to our Lady is a sure way to go to Jesus and to acquire holiness through union with him. The devotion which I teach is not new. Indeed it could not be condemned without overthrowing the foundations of Christianity. It is obvious then that this devotion is not new. If it is not commonly practised, the reason is that it is too sublime to be appreciated and undertaken by everyone. This devotion is a safe means of going to Jesus Christ, because it is Mary's role to lead us safely to her Son.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  16. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 24: Mary's Retreat (Day One)

    During this retreat, we've been pondering in our hearts certain truths of our faith that relate to Marian consecration. One might say we're on a kind of "pilgrimage of faith" leading up to Consecration Day. During her earthly life, Mary, too, was on a kind of retreat and pilgrimage of faith. She, too, pondered in her heart different truths related to Marian consecration. After all, she didn't discover all at once her vocation to be a spiritual mother and mediatrix. Like us, Mary needed to walk by faith while pondering in her heart. She, too, needed a time of preparation regarding her special role as our "mother in the order of grace."

    Because Mary's maternal mediation is so central to a proper understanding of Marian consecration, we're going to spend the next few days making a retreat within our retreat. We'll do this by peering in on Mary's retreat. In other words, we're going to accompany Mary along the way that God led her to progressively discover her vocation to be our spiritual mother and mediatrix.

    In some sense, Mary's retreat begins at the Annunciation. By her "yes" to God, her "fiat," she accepted her vocation to be the mother of Jesus. But did she also know that she was accepting the call to be the spiritual mother to all Christians as well? I don't know. What I do know is that the whole mystery of the Annunciation gave Mary something amazing to ponder, something that happens to be deeply related to Marian consecration and entrustment. Let me put it this way: Who was the first person to entrust himself to Mary? It wasn't St. Louis de Montfort. It was God the Father. John Paul explains, "For it must be recognized that before anyone else it was God himself, the Eternal Father, who entrusted himself to the Virgin of Nazareth, giving her his own Son in the mystery of the Incarnation." Mary surely marveled at this act of humility on God's part. As she marveled and pondered it, might she have begun to have some inkling that God would later want the people he came to redeem to follow his example?

    Mary had many other things to ponder during her preparation to be ever more completely our mother in the order of grace. The Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) offer several points of reflection that speak to Mary's spiritual motherhood. Take, for example, the passage in the Gospel of Mark (3:31-35) where Mary and Jesus' cousins are outside, wanting to see Jesus, and so they send for him and call to him. Jesus responds by asking, "Who are my mother and my brethren?" Then, looking at those sitting around him, he says "Here are my mother and my brethren! Whoever does the will of God is my brother, and sister, and mother."

    In giving this response, was Jesus being a bad son? No. He was being exactly the kind of son his Father wanted him to be. At the same time, he was preparing his mother for who he wanted her to be. Specifically, he was revealing to her the new filial bond of the kingdom that goes beyond the bonds of the flesh. In other words, he was pointing out the primacy of the spirit to the flesh, the primacy of the supernatural Fatherhood of God to the natural fatherhood (or motherhood) of man. It's likely that Mary immediately grasped some of what Jesus was trying to teach her. After all, for years she had pondered in her heart another strange response of Jesus, the one he gave when she found him in the Temple after three days of sorrowful searching: "Did you not know I must be about my Father's business?" (Lk 2:49).

    During his public ministry, Jesus was indeed completely concerned with his Father's business. Now, a key part of this business involved preparing his mother for her new role in God's kingdom. Jesus knew that "in the dimension of the Kingdom of God and in the radius of the fatherhood of God" Mary's motherhood "takes on another meaning." In the words reported by Mark that we read earlier, Jesus points to this meaning, "Whoever does the will of God is my brother, and sister, and mother." We can be sure that Mary pondered this in her heart and that she realized that by these words, Jesus was not rejecting her but rather preparing her.

    Can we be sure Jesus wasn't rejecting Mary? Yes, we can. Even if Jesus' words sound like he's rejecting her, they aren't. In fact, if we consider a similar passage in the Gospel of Luke (11:27-28), it's clear that Jesus is actually blessing his mother. In this other passage, "a woman in the crowd raised her voice" and said to Jesus, "Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts that nursed you." Jesus responds in a way similar to what we read in Mark, "Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it." At first reading, this may seem like a rebuke of Mary. But it's not. After all, who heard the word of God and kept it better than Mary? Nobody. Thus, Jesus is actually blessing his mother, and she would have realized it.

    Mary is an incredibly perceptive woman, and she paid close attention to Jesus' every word and action. The subtleties of his teaching were not lost on her, and she progressively came to realize the unfolding mystery of her own unique motherhood:

    [A]s the messianic mission of her Son grew clearer to her eyes and spirit, [Mary] herself as a mother became ever more open to that new dimension of motherhood which was to constitute her "part" beside her Son. Had she not said from the very beginning: "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word" (Lk 1:38)? Through faith Mary continued to hear and to ponder that word ... . Thus in a sense Mary as Mother became the first "disciple" of her Son, the first to whom he seemed to say: "Follow me" ...

    What a joy it must have been for Jesus to have one disciple who fully understood him. What a consolation to his Heart to find such attentiveness to God's Word!

    Tomorrow, we'll reflect more on Mary's attentiveness and how it led her to discover yet another aspect to her "part" beside her son in his work of salvation. This part does indeed involve, as John Paul wrote, a "new dimension of her motherhood." Thus, at Cana, we'll see that she gives birth to the faith of Jesus' disciples by initiating his first miracle, which comes through her motherly attentiveness to human need.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Help me to be faithful to heart-pondering prayer, as was Mary.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  17. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 25

    Sixth day Week 2

    True Devotion: Nos. 213-225


    213. My dear friend, be sure that if you remain faithful to the interior and exterior practices of this devotion which I will point out, the following effects will be produced in your soul:

    1. Knowledge of our unworthiness: By the light which the Holy Spirit will give you through Mary, his faithful spouse, you will perceive the evil inclinations of your fallen nature and how incapable you are of any good. Finally, the humble Virgin Mary will share her humility with you so that, although you regard yourself with distaste and desire to be disregarded by others, you will not look down slightingly upon anyone.

    2. A share in Mary's faith

    214. Mary will share her faith with you. Her faith on earth was stronger than that of all the patriarchs, prophets, apostles and saints.

    3. The gift of pure love

    215. The Mother of fair love will rid your heart of all scruples and inordinate servile fear.

    4. Great confidence in God and in Mary

    216. Our Blessed Lady will fill you with unbounded confidence in God and in herself: 1) Because you will no longer approach Jesus by yourself but always through Mary, your loving Mother.

    5. Communication of the spirit of Mary

    217. The soul of Mary will be communicated to you to glorify the Lord. Her spirit will take the place of yours to rejoice in God, her Saviour, but only if you are faithful to the practices of this devotion.

    6. Transformation into the likeness of Jesus

    218. If Mary, the Tree of Life, is well cultivated in our soul by fidelity to this devotion, she will in due time bring forth her fruit which is none other than Jesus.

    7. The greater glory of Christ

    222. If you live this devotion sincerely, you will give more glory to Jesus in a month than in many years of a more demanding devotion.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  18. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 25: Mary's Retreat (Day Two)

    Yesterday, we began a "retreat within our retreat" by joining Mary's retreat. In other words, we began to ponder the ways that Jesus prepared Mary to understand and fully embrace her new motherly role in the kingdom of God. Today, we continue this retreat at the wedding feast of Cana, where Mary's motherly mediation gloriously shines forth. Let's review the scene (Jn 2:1-12).

    The mother of Jesus is at a wedding feast, and Jesus and his disciples are also invited — presumably because of Mary. The wine runs short. Mary notices this, and brings it to the attention of her Son, "They have no wine." Jesus seems to rebuke her, "Woman, what have you to do with me? My hour has not yet come." Mary nevertheless tells the servants, "Do whatever he tells you." The servants follow Jesus' orders to fill stone jars with water. Then the water becomes wine, and the disciples believe.

    Let's now ponder deeply John Paul's commentary on this scene. His words get to the heart of Mary's role in our lives and explain why we should be seeking to consecrate ourselves to her:

    [Cana] clearly outlines the new dimension, the new meaning of Mary's motherhood. ... [It is] a new kind of motherhood according to the spirit and not just according to the flesh, that is to say Mary's solicitude for human beings, her coming to them in the wide variety of their wants and needs. At Cana in Galilee there is shown only one concrete aspect of human need, apparently a small one of little importance ("They have no wine"). But it has a symbolic value: this coming to the aid of human needs means, at the same time, bringing those needs within the radius of Christ's messianic mission and salvific power. Thus there is a mediation: Mary places herself between her Son and mankind in the reality of their wants, needs, and sufferings. She puts herself "in the middle," that is to say she acts as a mediatrix not as an outsider, but in her position as Mother. She knows that as such she can point out to her Son the needs of mankind, and in fact, she "has the right" to do so. Her mediation is thus in the nature of intercession: Mary "intercedes" for mankind. And that is not all. As a Mother she also wishes the messianic power of her Son to be manifested, that salvific power of His which is meant to help man in his misfortunes, to free him from the evil which in various forms and degrees weighs heavily upon his life.

    ... Another essential element of Mary's maternal task is found in her words to the servants: "Do whatever He tells you." The Mother of Christ presents herself as the spokeswoman of her Son's will, pointing out those things which must be done so that the salvific power of the Messiah may be manifested. At Cana, thanks to the intercession of Mary and the obedience of the servants, Jesus begins "His hour." At Cana Mary appears as believing in Jesus. Her faith evokes His first "sign" and helps to kindle the faith of the disciples.

    ...The episode at Cana in Galilee offers us a sort of first announcement of Mary's mediation, wholly oriented toward Christ and tending to the revelation of His salvific power.

    I'd like to highlight a few important points from this passage for us to ponder. (1) Not by necessity but by God's choice, "the handmaid of the Lord" who does the Father's will perfectly has a "right" as mother and mediatrix to point out to her Son the needs of mankind. Shouldn't we have recourse to such a powerful Mother of Mercy with regard to our own needs and intentions? (2) Mary needs servants who will obey her words, "Do whatever He tells you." Are we ready to be her servants so Jesus can begin His "hour" in our day? (3) It's clear from the words "Do whatever He tells you" that Mary's role is "wholly oriented toward Christ" and tends to the revelation of His saving power. Mary's mediation, therefore, is in union with and subordinate to the one mediation of Jesus Christ, our Savior.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Remind me to ask for Mary's powerful intercession in my times of need.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  19. Sam

    Sam Powers

    True Devotion to Mary-Day 26

    Seventh day Week 2

    True Devotion: Nos. 12-38

    "If you wish to understand the Mother," says a saint, "then understand the Son. She is a worthy Mother of God." Hic taceat omnis lingua : Here let every tongue be silent. My heart has dictated with special joy all that I have written to show that Mary has been unknown up till now, and that that is one of the reasons why Jesus Christ is not known as he should be. If then, as is certain, the knowledge and the kingdom of Jesus Christ must come into the world, it can only be as a necessary consequence of the knowledge and reign of Mary. She who first gave him to the world will establish his kingdom in the world.

    With the whole Church I acknowledge that Mary, being a mere creature fashioned by the hands of God is, compared to his infinite majesty, less than an atom, or rather is simply nothing, since he alone can say, "I am he who is". Consequently, this great Lord, who is ever independent and self-sufficient, never had and does not now have any absolute need of the Blessed Virgin for the accomplishment of his will and the manifestation of his glory. To do all things he has only to will them. However, I declare that, considering things as they are, because God has decided to begin and accomplish his greatest works through the Blessed Virgin ever since he created her, we can safely believe that he will not change his plan in the time to come, for he is God and therefore does not change in his thoughts or his way of acting.

    Mary is the Queen of heaven and earth by grace as Jesus is king by nature and by conquest. But as the kingdom of Jesus Christ exists primarily in the heart or interior of man, according to the words of the Gospel, "The kingdom of God is within you", so the kingdom of the Blessed Virgin is principally in the interior of man, that is, in his soul. It is principally in souls that she is glorified with her Son more than in any visible creature. So we may call her, as the saints do, Queen of our hearts.

    Litany of the Holy Ghost, Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ave Maris Stella, St. Louis de Montfort Prayer to Mary, pray the rosary

    Prayers can be found in this sticky:
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019
  20. Sam

    Sam Powers

    33 Days to Morning Glory

    DAY 26: Mary's Retreat (Day Three)

    Yesterday, at the wedding feast of Cana, we saw a glorious example of Mary's motherly mediation. After this event, Mary surely pondered it deeply in her heart and discovered much about her maternal mediation. Yet Cana was not the most important part of her preparation. The "crowning moment" of her preparation — indeed, its full actualization — came at Calvary.

    At Calvary, Mary suffers with Christ. Through faith, she is "perfectly united with Christ in His self-emptying." Through faith, she shares in the whole "shocking mystery" of His gift of Himself out of love for us. Through faith, "the Mother shares in the death of her Son, in His redeeming death." Before His death, Jesus has one more lesson for His perfect disciple, who has followed Him to the Cross and fully accepted to suffer with Him. Seeing her standing at the foot of the Cross next to His beloved disciple, John, He says, "Woman, behold, your son." Then, to John, "Behold, your mother" (Jn 19:26-27). With these words, Jesus gives Mary as Mother "to every single individual and all mankind."

    According to John Paul, this "new motherhood of Mary" is "the fruit of the 'new' love which came to definitive maturity in her at the foot of the Cross, through her sharing in the redemptive love of her son." This "new love," says John Paul, actually causes a "transformation" in Mary's motherhood such that she burns even more with love for all those for whom Jesus suffered and died.

    This idea that Mary, at the foot of the Cross, received a new, burning love for souls may remind us of Mother Teresa's deep insight about Mary. Recall that, for Teresa, Mary is the one who took Jesus' words "I thirst" most deeply to heart and that she helps others to take them to heart as well. Anyway, John Paul further reflects on Mary's transformation in love:

    [A]t the foot of the Cross there was ... accomplished her maternal cooperation with the Savior's whole mission through her actions and sufferings. Along the path of this collaboration with the work of her Son, the Redeemer, Mary's motherhood itself underwent a singular transformation, becoming even more imbued with "burning charity" toward all those to whom Christ's mission was directed. Through this "burning charity," which sought to achieve, in union with Christ, the restoration of "supernatural life to souls," Mary entered, in a way all her own, into the one mediation "between God and men" which is the mediation of the man Christ Jesus.At Calvary, Mary's preparation is ended. She has received the full gift of her universal spiritual motherhood and mediation, which is a unique cooperation in Christ's work of redemption and a sharing in His mediation.

    After Jesus' death on the Cross, we don't hear about Mary exercising her new motherhood until the day before Pentecost, when the apostles, together with "the women and Mary the mother of Jesus and his brethren" (Acts 1:14), are devoting themselves to prayer in the upper room. John Paul comments, "We see Mary prayerfully imploring the gift of the Spirit, who had already overshadowed her at the Annunciation." He goes on to point out that Mary is the "discreet yet essential presence" that indicates the path of "birth from the Holy Spirit" first at the Annunciation and now at the birth of the Church.

    Mary's new spiritual motherhood is deeply connected with the Church, "'with maternal love she cooperates in the birth and development' of the sons and daughters of Mother Church." This birth and development has its source in the Church's sacramental life, where Mary's motherly mediation is particularly present. For instance, Mary is surely interceding and active with her Spouse, the Holy Spirit, when the Spirit transforms us into members of Christ's body at Baptism. Moreover, she is just as present and active with her Spouse at Mass; for it is at Mass that Christ's "true body born of the Virgin Mary" becomes present. Because of the centrality of the Eucharist in Christian faith and life, Mary is always striving to lead the faithful to it.

    As we close today's reflection, which concludes the three days of "Mary's spiritual motherhood retreat," we should keep in mind one important point: Mary's new motherhood is not some vague or abstract sort of thing. It's concrete and personal. And even though it's universal, it's also intensely particular. Mary is your mother. She is my mother. In this light, John Paul thinks it's significant that Mary's new motherhood on Calvary is expressed in the singular, "Behold, your son" not "Behold, your billions of spiritual children." The Pope gets to the heart of it when he says, "Even when the same woman is the mother of many children, her personal relationship with each one of them is of the very essence of motherhood." In short: Mary is uniquely, particularly, personally your mother and my mother, and she doesn't lose us in the crowd.

    Today's Prayer:
    Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary.
    Thank you for the gift of my loving Mother, Mary.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2019

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